Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Progressives; Still Lost in the 1920s

The divide between progressives and conservatives (liberals*) has reached its pinnacle with the progressive Obama Administration. The progressive movement started in the 1838 with Charles Darwin and a new scientific paradigm. It is no coincidence that Eugenics theory was extrapolated by Darwin’s cousin from “Origin of the Species”, which was supported by the British “fabien socialists” John Maynard Keynes of Keynesian economic theory and many of the British Conservatives* of the time. Next we have the Communist Manifesto by Marx in 1848, which even today is the most influential theory that drives progressives and the left. You also have the theories of Sigmund Freud, which emerged as he published his books in the early 1900’s. During WWI, (1914-1920) the concept of Fascism was developed by Italian socialists and rose to power in Italy and Germany, Romania during the Depression following the war. It is this time period, primarily between the end of WWI and the Depression, which resulted in the birth of progressive idealism, that human nature could be understood, defined and controlled by science.

*Since England has no constitution, the governing philosophy of the conservatives varies from American conservatives. In Europe, American conservatism espousing individual rights were referred to as a liberal, as believing in liberty for the individual.

The starting point for progressive political thought is the oppression by free market capitalism; that all wealth is created by exploiting the workers, which or course is a basic tenet of Marxism. Progressives have the belief that the majority of workers live a life of quiet desperation and it is the job of government to redistribute wealth to relieve this misery. They also have an irrefutable belief that all their views and policies are the result of in-depth study and the scientific method and they belong to an intelligentsia class that are intellectually superior. One should not forget that Marx was praised for a scientific grasp of the inevitable direction of societal evolution. British writer C.H. Waddington wrote an article in Nature magazine (1941), titled “The Scientific Attitude”. Waddington writes that the “profound scientific philosophy” of Marxism is “almost, if not quite, identical with those underlying the scientific approach to nature.” The progressives of the time, Marx, Engel, Darwin, Freud and Julian Huxley were the intelligentsia that developed humanistic sciences like Eugenics, which along other schools of thought bolstered their belief in a division between the superior intelligentsia and the need to control the collective. This new scientific paradigm was Newtonian in nature; that the human condition could be reduced to data, plugged into a mathematical equation and reproduced. This entire process of basing the political on science is but a deception. It is no coincidence that progressive thought and science are both produced in academia. The idea that science cannot be influenced and comes to its conclusions independently is historically absurd. The truth is science has always been used to protect and prove the status quo, while independent inquiry is usually done in darkened rooms with notes written in code. Most scientists are employed by large corporations and are not paid to do independent research.

Because progressives believe they exist on a higher intellectual plain, they are particularly disturbed by the constraints of the rule of law and view the US Constitution as a constraining document; Senator Obama, “it (the US Constitution) doesn’t say what the Federal government or the state government must do on your behalf.” This is of course unless the rule of law can be used to forward their agenda, then once again the rule of law becomes sacred; it is the progressive tenet of relativism. If a progressive cannot discredit a liberal* who is obviously as educated as they are, the liberal* is personally attacked and judged as obviously evil. There is absolutely no room in the progressive mind for intellectual independent inquiry. The idea that someone may spread a false, anti-progressive message, which would water down or alter progressive propaganda, is often met with demonstrations and physical restraint or violence. Progressives truly believe that their scrupulous study, high standards and intelligence are the only true salvation of human kind and they are the guardians of the true (new) freedom, which is a collective, free from economic hardship and choice. In “The Road to Serfdom”, F.A. Hayek describes how the progressives of the day, “have attacked the “metaphysical” idea of individual rights and insisted that in a rationally ordered world, there will be no individual rights but only individual duties.”

Progressives will continue to use government to re-distribute wealth and energy as they get their power by offering security at the price of weakening the free market. Since the security offered by a free market society is variety and mobility, a planned, non-competitive society eventually removes any security offered by the free market. The problems that naturally occur as the government intervenes more and more into the economy, creating quasi-government organizations, can only lead to economic collapse. The progressive will then blame a lack of oversight over the organizations they themselves created and will offer themselves up as the only persons that can fix the problem. Progressives will continue to promise more than they can ever deliver, continually moving toward government control and a planned economy. The idea that a market should exist, uncontrolled and with it’s own rules is their definition of true evil. Progressives do not believe that liberal* politicians act in good faith; they are truly astonished that the citizenry would chose a liberal* government and believe it can only be accomplished through fear mongering, misrepresentation and evil intent. Harry Reid’s recent statement, “I don't know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican” is definitive of this astonishment. This makes any discussion with a progressive impossible, as the end result will be the non-progressives argument is not based on intelligent thought, but allegiance to the unscrupulous or irrational emotion; hence the common rebuffs that liberals* are racists or in the pocket of “big business”.

As England fell into WWII, Lord John Maynard Keynesian was tasked with constructing a wartime British economy. As the war wound down, he was impressed by the production and stability of his planned wartime economy. He pondered that if the same wartime economy was maintained during peacetime, the British economy would continue to enjoy the prosperity of government steering and planning. The absurdity of the idea was Keynes being oblivious to human nature. While Keynes planning of England’s wartime economy certainly led to it’s stability, it was the sacrifice of the British workers that made it successful. This is the common mistake made by all progressives, that workers will continue to sacrifice solely for the good of the state. When progressives realize that workers will strive for human dignity, even to the exclusion of security, they blame the worker without doubting their science; the historic result of this has been catastrophic.

In the final analysis the commonality with progressive thought is their failure to move beyond this historical scientific paradigm to more contemporary views. Newtonian science has been supplemented with Chaos Theory; Freudian analysis has been replaced with “client centered” psychology. And history shows us that socialism is an unworkable economic theory and there is nothing less scientific then to continually run the same experiment and expect a different result (Albert Einstein said this the definition of insanity). It is as if the progressive movement suffers from a collective form of Borderline Personality Disorder, which presents as a compulsive need to control their environment and every one around them with perceived specificity rules known only to them and where the lessons of history is irrelevant. As F.A. Hayek ended his book, “The Road to Serfdom, “If they (our grandfathers) had not yet fully learned what is necessary to create the world they wanted, the experience we have gained ought of have equipped us better for the task. If in the first attempt to create the world of free men we have failed, we must try again.

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